In the face of the racial justice crisis that our communities face across our country, both of our organizations called for mass mobilizations to demand meaningful police reform in our city.
We presented to all Pasadenans the Community Bill of Rights and Declaration of Interdependence: A document that outlines a new vision for policing in our city. The fact is that systemic racism has polluted law enforcement and as a result, a culture of violence and impunity has prevailed for generations. The Community Bill of Rights constitutes a call for action and courage to everyone but especially to our elected leaders. In it, we imagine a city where community safety does not mean police violence.
There is a list of 12 demands in the Community Bill of Rights. This past week, the Public Safety Committee initiated the debate about police oversight. It is deeply appreciated but the proposal outlined does not meet the community demands. Police oversight is the first and main demand of the Community Bill of Rights and it reads as follows:
“First, impose civilian oversight of the Police Department. The City Council should create a Community Police Oversight Commission, to be made up of city residents, and hire a paid, full-time Independent Police Auditor. The auditor would have subpoena power, select the Commission staff, and report to the City Council. The Commission's and Auditor's duties would include:
1. Holding public hearings.
2. Publicly reviewing the Department's purchase and use of surveillance technology.
3. Issuing quarterly and annual comprehensive reports on police officers' use of force or threats to use force, and on all officers who have had complaints against them for excessive force, racial profiling, or other abuses. The report would include all disciplinary actions against sworn officers, the amounts spent to settle lawsuits against police officers, and the officers involved. These reports should be available to the public to the maximum extent permitted by California law.”This is from our standpoint the first step to start correcting and dignifying policing in our city.
There is no ambiguity in our demand and now the political class has to decide whether they deliver real reform or not. We ask all Pasadenans for whom black lives matter to hold them accountable if they don’t.
To sign the petition and voice your opinion, click HERE.
NAACP Pasadena Branch #1054
Allen Edson, President
Florence Annang, Communications